Geraldine McCaughrean (pronounced "Muh-cork-run") (born 6 June 1951) is a British children's novelist. She has written more than 150 books and her work has been translated into 42 languages worldwide.
She may be known best for writing the authorised sequel to Peter Pan in 2006.
McCaughrean was born in London and grew up in North London. She was the youngest of three children. She studied teaching but found her true vocation in writing. She claims that what makes her love writing is the desire to escape from an unsatisfactory world. Her motto is: do not write about what you know, write about what you want to know.
J. M. Barrie gave all rights to Peter Pan to Great Ormond Street Hospital in 1929, and in 2004, to coincide with Peter Pan's centenary, the hospital launched a competition to find the author of a sequel. McCaughrean won the competition, after submitting a synopsis and a sample chapter. Peter Pan in Scarlet was released internationally on 5 October 2006, published in the UK by Oxford University Press and in the US by Simon & Schuster.
As of 2013, she has launched an online novel based on the Hylas and Hercules myth, A Thousand Kinds of Ugly.
For her lifetime contribution as a children's writer McCaughrean was the British nominee in 2004 for the biennial, international Hans Christian Andersen Award, the highest international recognition available to creators of children's books. She was elected an Honorary Fellow of Canterbury Christ Church University in 2006 and a Fellow of the English Association in 2010. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature since 2010.
McCaughrean has won several annual book awards. For A Pack of Lies (Oxford, 1988), a collection of historical stories in a frame narrative, she won the two most prestigious British children's book awards. The Carnegie Medal conferred by the Library Association recognised the year's best children's book by a British subject. The Guardian Prize is a once-in-a-lifetime award judged by a panel of British children's writers and limited to fiction books.[a]
- 1987 Whitbread Children's Book Award for A Little Lower Than the Angels
- 1988 Carnegie Medal for A Pack of Lies
- 1989 Guardian Children's Fiction Prize for A Pack of Lies
- 1994 Whitbread Children's Book Award for Gold Dust
- 2000 Blue Peter Book of the Year, the inaugural Blue Peter Book Award, for The Pilgrim's Progress retold
- 2001 Blue Peter "Best Book to Keep Forever" for The Kite Rider
- 2004 Whitbread Children's Book Award for Not the End of the World
- 2008 Michael L. Printz Award, from US librarians for the year's best in young-adult literature, The White Darkness
- In 45 years to 2011, six authors won the Carnegie Medal for their Guardian Prize-winning books. Professional librarians confer the Carnegie and select the winner from all British children's books (although it was established in 1936 as a once-in-a-lifetime award). The Guardian newspaper's prize winner is selected by British children's writers, "peers" of the author who has not yet won it, for one children's (age 7+) or young-adult fiction book. Details regarding author and publisher nationality have varied.
- Today there are usually eight books on the Carnegie shortlist. CCSU lists 32 "Highly Commended" runners up for the Carnegie Medal from 1966 to 2002 but only three before 1979 when the distinction became approximately annual. There were 29 "HC" books in 24 years including McCaughrean alone in 2001.
- "Geraldine McCaughrean" in Contemporary Authors Online, Thomson Gale, entry updated 15 April 2004.
- "2004". Hans Christian Andersen Awards. International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY).
"Hans Christian Andersen Awards". IBBY. Retrieved 22 July 2013.
- "RSL Fellows". The Royal Society of Literature. Retrieved 10 August 2010.
- (Carnegie Winner 1988). Living Archive: Celebrating the Carnegie and Greenaway Winners. CILIP. Retrieved 13 July 2012.
- "Guardian children's fiction prize relaunched: Entry details and list of past winners". theguardian 12 March 2001. Retrieved 2 August 2012.
- "Michael L. Printz Winners and Honor Books". YALSA. American Library Association. Retrieved 8 March 2013.
- "Carnegie Medal Award". 2007(?). Curriculum Lab. Elihu Burritt Library. Central Connecticut State University (CCSU). Retrieved 13 July 2012.
- Official website
- "Neverland regained", Review of Peter Pan in Scarlet, Mick Imlah, TLS 25 October 2006 (archived 2008-03-11)
- Geraldine McCaughrean at British Council: Literature
- Geraldine McCaughrean at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database